PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — There was an excitement outside Heinz Field this Sunday afternoon as fans waited in line for hours for the first ever Steeler Family Fest and practice at Heinz Field.
Dane Andrews, of Bridgeville, has been to a game before, but never a practice.
“I just hope to see James Conner come back from his shoulder injury,” he said. “I got to see him play at Pitt last year because I had Pitt season tickets, so I really got to see him play last year and he was a phenomenal player, but I think he’s going to be even better because he’s wearing number 30 for the Steelers.”
Nicole Coleman and her family took the T in and made an evening of it.
“It’s our first time coming to a practice,” she said. “Very, very excited to see that, and we’re here to support the Special Olympics.”
There was a lot to do on this warm summer evening. Face painting, frisbee dogs and a BMX stunt show were the warm-up acts. Special Olympians escorted by area police got a standing ovation. And the stars of the night, the Pittsburgh Steelers, came onto the field like rock stars.
There were literally thousands of fans on hand — waving Terrible Towels, screaming for their favorite players and just quite simply enjoying the night.
Craig Gehm hopes this is the start of a tradition.
“This is a great atmosphere,” he said. “A lot of families turned out today, and there’s a lot of kids. Sometimes getting out to Latrobe during the week is tough to do.”
Dean McAfee agreed.
“It’s awesome. That’s great, great energy for the fans, and for the players too,” he said.
Fans also had a chance to take pictures with a Super Bowl trophy and players from Super Bowl wins. It was a Steeler fan’s dream come true, all for a $10 admission price.